OUR TOP THREE ICONIC WOMENSWEAR DESIGNERS
Although women make up most graduates from fashion design degrees worldwide, it’s male designers that dominate luxury fashion with few females achieving success in the industry that’s ironically geared towards them. For this reason, GIULIO wants to shine a spotlight on those who have broken through the glass ceiling, surprising us each fashion week with the unique designs that have made them into household names.
VIVIENNE WESTWOOD: THE PIONEER OF PUNK FASHION
Just like many women in the 1960s, Vivienne settled into somber life as a married primary school teacher, suppressing the desire she had to work in the art world. It was her soon-to-be husband Malcolm McLaren who encouraged her to rebel against the social constructs put in place for women and to begin designing the punk-infused pieces we know and love today.
Now in her 80s, Vivienne Westwood continues to revolt for a better future through clothing whilst paying tribute to her historic fashion moments with ‘God Save The Queen’ motifs, Orb embroideries, and plenty of crinoline creations. Not only did her clothes launch the UK’s Punk movement, but they also proved that an empowered woman deserved to have a voice and to showcase her independent style.
ULLA JOHNSON: THE FREE-SPIRITED NEW YORKER
Although she is the youngest on our list, Ulla Johnson has already proved she is a force to be reckoned with, sweeping into the fashion industry with her modern bohemian designs. Since her debut in 1998, Ulla has not strayed from the aesthetic she built from family travels and her Manhattan upbringing. The contrast of urban silhouettes and ethereal prints is entirely unique to Ulla Johnson’s label and for this reason, she has amassed a large following of women who use her designs as a form of escapism.
Ulla Johnson continues to celebrate women through clothing, but she also works to improve the lives of the women behind the clothing. From Peru to Kenya, she offers small rural communities of women jobs whilst shining a spotlight on their incredible handmade designs. From ruffled skirts to puff-ball sleeves, her collections offer a contemporary take on hyper-femininity that resonates with women today who want to feel graceful and whimsical but also strong.
ISABEL MARANT: THE ORIGINAL FRENCH COOL GIRL
Since her teenage years, the French designer Isabel Marant refused to fit in; hiding her self-made fashions in plastic bags to slip on at school and dressing in mostly menswear. This independent attitude alongside her love for the rebellious Vivienne Westwood was what inspired her to take on the fashion industry in the mid-90s with her eponymous label.
Mixing rock and roll energy with laid-back Parisian style, Isabel Marant quickly became the go-to for cool young women everywhere and the hype for her bohemian dresses and denim jeans has only grown through the decades. It was clear from her first runway, using her friends as models, that she wanted her brand to be about supporting and celebrating women; giving them the courage to show their unique style just as she did in early adolescence.
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Not only have their legacies inspired countless young women to become designers, but their iconic clothing and accessories also give fashion fans the permission to showcase their own unique definitions of femininity.
You too can feel empowered this International Women’s Day as GIULIO is offering 15% off the best in female-led brands including Khaite, Versace, and of course, the designers we’ve mentioned in this article.